Top French cueman Brian Ochoiski is the latest in our series of interviews featuring players from a growing wave of talent emerging in continental Europe.
Ochoiski, 22, narrowly missed out on securing professional status at 2020 Q School, losing 4-2 in the final round of event three to Farakh Ajaib. However, he is now setting his sights running the Betfred World Championship qualifying gauntlet and reaching the Crucible.
He faces Rory McLeod in the opening round this afternoon and if he were to reach the Theatre of Dreams, it would come with the added bonus of a two-year tour card. Ochoiski believes that clinching his place on the World Snooker Tour and the Crucible this week is a realistic possibility.
Despite missing out on professional status, Ochoiski has played a prominent role on the circuit this season as a top up. He crafted his first century on the World Snooker Tour in an impressive encounter with World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan at the English Open, which he led 2-0 before going out 4-2.
Ochoiski said: “I take this opportunity to turn professional via the Crucible very seriously. I’m working hard towards this. I think my game is in good shape at the moment so why not go to the Crucible and turn professional this way? It would be amazing for me, for France and for everyone supporting me. I’m in Sheffield practising and every day I walk past the Crucible and I look at it as the place I want to be. It would be amazing to be there.
“It was a dream come true to play Ronnie O’Sullivan. I’ve come from nowhere as my country isn’t very developed with snooker at the moment, I hope that it will be in the future. When I saw I was drawn against Ronnie I was very happy. It was the right moment to play him. Making my first professional century against him was amazing. Even if I didn’t win the match, I was very happy to play him.”